Discourse

Walter Brueggemann 07-25-2016

Image via  / Shutterstock.com

Hosea 11:1-11, by the force of prophetic imagination, takes us inside the troubled interiority of God. It does not, however, start there. It begins, rather, with an external encounter between God and God’s people, Israel. The poetry is cast in the imagery of “father-son,” with God cast as father and Israel cast as son. (It could as well have been cast as “mother-daughter,” but that would not happen in that ancient patriarchal society). The imagery of “father-son” was operative in Israelite imagination since God’s first declaration, “Israel is my first born son” (Exodus 4:22). Status as first-born son carries with it immense entitlement, but also inescapable responsibility to uphold the honor of the father and the family.

the Web Editors 02-03-2016

Jimmy Kimmel recently hosted Jesus on his late show. Not real Jesus, of course. (Don’t worry, this isn’t the apocalypse. You haven’t been left behind). It’s just pretend white Jesus.

Kimmel’s team took real quotes from various presidential candidates and let an actor pretending to be Jesus read them as if he were running for president. And yes, they did happen to include quotes from Donald Trump.

“We want[ed] to get an idea of what [these statements] would actually sound like from the mouth of Jesus,” said Kimmel.

It’s quite disturbing, really. 

RNS photo by Adelle M. Banks

Episcopal Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts speaks during the April 10, 2013 meeting. RNS photo by Adelle M. Banks

 

WASHINGTON — Twenty-five top Christian leaders gathered in the U.S. city with perhaps the worst reputation for civil discourse Wednesday and committed themselves to elevating the level of public conversation.

Meeting in a row house three blocks from the U.S. Capitol, the group spanned the Christian spectrum, and included officials from liberal churches and the most conservative of interest groups.

“The ground of our spiritual understanding is in treating other people as the image of God, treating people with respect,” said Episcopal Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori.

“Faith leaders have a remarkable opportunity to shift the conversation, but it’s very challenging, particularly in a larger society that wants to understand everything as a battle, as engaging the enemy, rather than with someone who might have something to teach us,” she said.

Sungyak Kim 10-02-2012
Political icon image, Gary Hathaway / Shutterstock.com

Political icon image, Gary Hathaway / Shutterstock.com

What if I told you that the political discourse in America has proven for decades what PSY’s ‘Gangnam Style’ phenomenon has proven recently? What do I mean? It is simply this: people can indeed get tirelessly excited about something that sounds good without understanding its contents. 

Like every election year, 2012 seems to have its own particular set of buzzwords and slogans. From “the forgotten 47 percent” to “you did build that,” those on the left and the right are each trying to infuse the political discourse with their own partisan lingo. But it’s time somebody put a stop to the hype and asks the sensible question: “What is the real meaning behind all of this?”

Truth is, both political parties have been directing their resources to highlight their differences more than anything else. They are platforms defined by contrast, not by real facts. This should lead us to raise the question that is usually unasked (and therefore unanswered) amid the consistent heat of the American political climate: “If the government is designed ultimately for the good of the people, is the political discourse today reflective of that goal?”

To this question, the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche answers, “No.” 

Jim Wallis 11-03-2011

People of faith -- including evangelical Christians -- will be voting both ways in the upcoming election. It is simply not true that they will be voting only on one or two issues.

And, if evangelicals focus on many of the issues central to their faith, rather than becoming partisan cheerleaders, they might be able to raise some critical issues in this election and to hold both sides more accountable, even in a campaign that both Richard and I suspect will be one of the ugliest in U.S. history.

At the end of the evening, Amy remarked that if the upcoming election debates were as civil and substantive as this evening was, we would all be very grateful.

Life is hard. It is full of pain, disappointments, and challenges of every kind. When hard times come our way, we often ask, Why me? And the answer comes: Why not you? We sometimes think that God has forsaken us, and sometimes God is silent. It is difficult to remember the Biblical wisdom that explains why believers, children of God, the beloved of God go through difficult times.

Gary M. Burge 05-10-2011
Once again last week the pages of the New York Times was graced with an ad published by David Horowitz's Freedom Center, one of
Jeannie Choi 03-11-2011

Budget Cuts. King Phillip IV. Japan. Here's a little round up of links from around the Web you may have missed this week:

Margaret Benefiel 01-19-2011
In the midst of the American discussions of violence and civility in public discourse following the tragic shootings in
LaVonne Neff 01-11-2011
A public figure is shot. School children are shot. A building explodes. A package explodes. And immediately we look for someone or something to blame: Republicans?
Duane Shank 11-01-2010

[Editor's Note: Welcome to Sojourner's Truth and Civility Election Watch Honor Roll. This post is part of a series of submissions from our constituents that highlight organizations and individuals engaging in positive, honest discourse.]

Sheldon Good 11-01-2010

On my way back to Pennsylvania after attending Jon Stewart's Rally to Restore Sanity in Washington, D.C. last Saturday, I couldn't get one sign out of my head which read, "It's too bad we even need a rally to restore SANITY."

Patricia Kilby 10-28-2010

[Editor's Note: Welcome to Sojourner's Truth and Civility Election Watch Honor Roll. This post is part of a series of submissions from our constituents that highlight organizations and individuals engaging in positive, honest discourse.]

the Web Editors 10-27-2010

[Editor's Note: Welcome to Sojourner's Truth and Civility Election Watch Honor Roll. This post is part of a series of submissions from our constituents that highlight organizations and individuals engaging in positive, honest discourse.]

Helen P. DeLeon 10-26-2010

[Editor's Note: Welcome to Sojourner's Truth and and Civility Election Watch Honor Roll. This post is part of a series of submissions from our constituents that highlight organizations and individuals engaging in positive, honest discourse.]

Jim Wallis 10-22-2010

You have to wonder -- when political ads focus on a college prank pulled by your opponent -- what else could that money have gone to?

Johnathan Smith 07-23-2010
The NAACP recently roared into the national spotlight when, during the organization's 101st Annual Convention, its delegates unanimously passed a http://www.naacp.org/blog/entry/why-we-pas

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